Effects of peripartum propylene glycol or fats differing in fatty acid profiles on feed intake, production, and plasma metabolites in dairy cows.J Dairy Sci. 2007 Aug; 90(8):3846-56.JD
Dry multiparous cows were used to investigate the effects on intake, production, and metabolism of either a supplement containing 55% dry propylene glycol (PGLY), a prilled fat supplement (PrFA) containing a low proportion of unsaturated fatty acids (FA), or calcium soaps of FA supplement (CaLFA) containing a high proportion of unsaturated FA. Fifty-three dry cows (256 d pregnant) were stratified into 4 groups and began one of the following dietary treatments: 1) control cows were fed a dry cow diet and at postpartum were fed a lactating cow diet; 2) diets of cows in the PGLY group were supplemented with 500 g/d per cow of dry PGLY until 21 d in milk (DIM); 3) diets of cows in the PrFA group were supplemented with 230 g/d per cow of PrFA until 100 DIM; 4) diets of cows in the CaLFA group were supplemented with 215 g/d per cow of CaLFA until 100 DIM. Prepartum DMI was lower in the PrFA and CaLFA groups than in the control and PGLY groups, whereas postpartum DMI in the PrFA group was higher than that in the control group. Milk production until 100 DIM in both fat-supplemented groups was 4.5% higher than that in the control group. Plasma glucose concentrations pre- and postpartum were higher in the PGLY group than in the PrFA and CaLFA groups, but were similar to those in the control group. Prepartum nonesterified FA (NEFA) concentrations in plasma were increased by 43 and 70% in the PrFA and CaLFA groups, respectively, as compared with the control and PGLY groups. Both fat supplements increased plasma beta-hydroxybutyrate concentrations over those of the PGLY and control groups pre- and postpartum. Peripartum plasma insulin concentrations in the control group were 1.7-fold higher than in the PrFA group and 2.1-fold higher than in the CaFA group. Differences between the PrFA and CaLFA groups were observed: DMI was higher pre- and postpartum in the PrFA group than in the CaLFA group, and prepartum plasma NEFA concentrations were 19% higher and insulin concentrations were 21% lower in the CaLFA group than in the PrFA group. No significant differences were observed in DMI, plasma glucose, NEFA, and beta-hydroxybutyrate concentrations between the control and PGLY groups. Feeding fat to cows during late pregnancy decreased the DMI and negatively affected the metabolic status of the cows, as reflected by plasma metabolites. Furthermore, protected fat with a high proportion of unsaturated FA (CaLFA) was more pronounced in increasing plasma NEFA concentrations and depressing plasma insulin concentrations than fat with a low proportion of unsaturated FA (PrFA).